Reprise Records

Last updated

Reprise Records
Reprise Records.svg
Parent company Warner Music Group
Founded1960
Founder Frank Sinatra
StatusActive
Distributor(s)
GenreVarious
Country of originUnited States
Official website warnerbrosrecords.com

Reprise Records is an American record label founded in 1960 by Frank Sinatra. It is owned by Warner Music Group, and operates through Warner Bros. Records, one of its flagship labels. [1]

A record label, or record company, is a brand or trademark associated with the marketing of music recordings and music videos. Sometimes, a record label is also a publishing company that manages such brands and trademarks, coordinates the production, manufacture, distribution, marketing, promotion, and enforcement of copyright for sound recordings and music videos; also conducting talent scouting and development of new artists ; and maintains contracts with recording artists and their managers. The term "record label" derives from the circular label in the center of a vinyl record which prominently displays the manufacturer's name, along with other information.

Frank Sinatra American singer, actor, and producer

Francis Albert Sinatra was an American singer, actor, and producer who was one of the most popular and influential musical artists of the 20th century. He is one of the best-selling music artists of all time, having sold more than 150 million records worldwide. Born in Hoboken, New Jersey, to Italian Americans, Sinatra began his musical career in the swing era with bandleaders Harry James and Tommy Dorsey. Sinatra found success as a solo artist after he signed with Columbia Records in 1943, becoming the idol of the "bobby soxers". He released his debut album, The Voice of Frank Sinatra, in 1946. Sinatra's professional career had stalled by the early 1950s, and he turned to Las Vegas, where he became one of its best known residency performers as part of the Rat Pack. His career was reborn in 1953 with the success of From Here to Eternity, with his performance subsequently winning an Academy Award and Golden Globe Award for Best Supporting Actor. Sinatra released several critically lauded albums, including In the Wee Small Hours (1955), Songs for Swingin' Lovers! (1956), Come Fly with Me (1958), Only the Lonely (1958) and Nice 'n' Easy (1960).

Warner Music Group American global music conglomerate

Warner Music Group Inc. (WMG), also known as Warner Music or WEA International Inc., is an American multinational entertainment and record label conglomerate headquartered in New York City. It is one of the "big three" recording companies and the third largest in the global music industry, after Universal Music Group (UMG) and Sony Music Entertainment (SME). Formerly part of Time Warner, the company was publicly traded on the New York Stock Exchange until May 2011, when it announced its privatization and sale to Access Industries, which was completed in July 2011. With a multibillion-dollar annual turnover, WMG employs more than 3,500 people and has operations in more than 50 countries throughout the world.

Contents

Artists currently signed to Reprise Records include Enya, Michael Bublé, Eric Clapton, Green Day, Stevie Nicks, Neil Young, Deftones, Mastodon, Josh Groban, Disturbed, Idina Menzel, Gerard Way, Dwight Yoakam, and Never Shout Never.

Eithne Pádraigín Ní Bhraonáin ; born 17 May 1961), known professionally as Enya, is an Irish singer, songwriter and musician. Born into a musical family and raised in the Irish-speaking area of Gweedore in County Donegal, Enya began her music career when she joined her family's Celtic band Clannad in 1980 on keyboards and backing vocals. She left in 1982 with their manager and producer Nicky Ryan to pursue a solo career, with Ryan's wife Roma Ryan as her lyricist. Enya developed her sound over the following four years with multitracked vocals and keyboards with elements of new age, Celtic, classical, church, and folk music. She has sung in ten languages.

Michael Bublé Canadian singer, songwriter and actor

Michael Steven Bublé is a Canadian singer, songwriter, actor and record producer.

Eric Clapton English musician, singer, songwriter, and guitarist

Eric Patrick Clapton, is an English rock and blues guitarist, singer, and songwriter. He is the only three-time inductee to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame: once as a solo artist and separately as a member of the Yardbirds and of Cream. Clapton has been referred to as one of the most important and influential guitarists of all time. Clapton ranked second in Rolling Stone magazine's list of the "100 Greatest Guitarists of All Time" and fourth in Gibson's "Top 50 Guitarists of All Time". He was also named number five in Time magazine's list of "The 10 Best Electric Guitar Players" in 2009.

Company history

Beginnings

"Tricolor" label, used by Reprise until 1968. (Label to the Kinks' Something Else.) Reprise Label Tricolor Kinks.JPG
"Tricolor" label, used by Reprise until 1968. (Label to the Kinks' Something Else .)

Reprise Records was formed in 1960 [2] by Frank Sinatra in order to allow more artistic freedom for his own recordings. Soon thereafter, he garnered the nickname "The Chairman of the Board". [3] Because of dissatisfaction with Capitol/EMI, and after trying to buy Norman Granz's Verve Records, [4] the first album Sinatra released on Reprise was Ring-a-Ding-Ding! As CEO of Reprise, Sinatra recruited several artists for the fledgling label, such as fellow Rat Pack members Dean Martin and Sammy Davis, Jr. The original roster from 1961 to 1963 included Bing Crosby, Jo Stafford, Rosemary Clooney, Nancy Sinatra, Esquivel and stand-up comedian Redd Foxx. The original Reprise LP label had four different logos, depending on the genre: a steamship for Pop records (pictured), a cherub for Jazz records, an owl for Spoken Word/Comedy records, and a picture of Sinatra for his records.

Capitol Records American record label

Capitol Records is an American record label owned by Universal Music Group through its Capitol Music Group imprint. It was founded as the first West Coast-based record label in the United States in 1942 by Johnny Mercer, Buddy DeSylva, and Glenn E. Wallichs. Capitol was acquired by British music conglomerate EMI as its North American subsidiary in 1955. EMI was acquired by Universal Music Group in 2012 and was merged with the company a year later, making Capitol and the Capitol Music Group both a part of UMG. The label's circular headquarter building in Hollywood is a recognized landmark of California.

EMI British music recording and publishing company

EMI Group Limited was a British Transnational conglomerate founded in March 1931 in London. At the time of its break-up in 2012, it was the fourth largest business group and record label conglomerate in the music industry, and was one of the big four record companies ; its labels included EMI Records, Parlophone, Virgin Records, and Capitol Records, which are now owned by other companies.

Norman Granz American jazz musician and producer

Norman Granz was an American jazz music impresario.

"Two-tone orange" label used by Reprise during the Warner Bros.-Seven Arts merger from 1968 to 1969. (Label to Jimi Hendrix's Smash Hits.) After the Kinney National Company took over Warner Bros. in 1969, the orange tone at the top of the label was changed to the same tone as on the rest of the label, the W7 box logo was removed and the circled :r logo became a boxed logo without the "Reprise" designation. Reprise Label Orange Hendrix.JPG
"Two-tone orange" label used by Reprise during the Warner Bros.-Seven Arts merger from 1968 to 1969. (Label to Jimi Hendrix's Smash Hits .) After the Kinney National Company took over Warner Bros. in 1969, the orange tone at the top of the label was changed to the same tone as on the rest of the label, the W7 box logo was removed and the circled :r logo became a boxed logo without the "Reprise" designation.

One of the label's founding principles under Sinatra's leadership was that each artist would have full creative freedom, and at some point complete ownership of their work, including publishing rights. This is the reason why recordings of early Reprise artists (Dean Martin, Jimi Hendrix, the Kinks, etc.) are (in most cases) currently distributed through other labels. In Martin's case, his Reprise recordings were out of print for nearly 20 years before a deal was struck with Capitol Records. Reprise continued to reissue the Sinatra catalog until 2013 when it was sold to Capitol.

Jimi Hendrix American guitarist, singer and songwriter

James Marshall Hendrix was an American rock guitarist, singer, and songwriter. Although his mainstream career spanned only four years, he is widely regarded as one of the most influential electric guitarists in the history of popular music, and one of the most celebrated musicians of the 20th century. The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame describes him as "arguably the greatest instrumentalist in the history of rock music".

The Kinks English rock band

The Kinks are an English rock band formed in Muswell Hill, North London, in 1964 by brothers Ray and Dave Davies. They are regarded as one of the most influential rock bands of the 1960s. The band emerged during the height of British rhythm and blues and Merseybeat, and were briefly part of the British Invasion of the United States until their touring ban in 1965. Their third single, the Ray Davies-penned "You Really Got Me", became an international hit, topping the charts in the United Kingdom and reaching the Top 10 in the United States. Their music was influenced by a wide range of genres, including rhythm and blues, British music hall, folk and country. They gained a reputation for reflecting English culture and lifestyle, fuelled by Ray Davies' observational writing style, and are considered one of the most influential groups of the period.

Sold to Warner Bros.

In August, 1963, as part of a film deal, Warner Bros. purchased Reprise (which had been losing money) from Sinatra, who nonetheless retained a 1/3 interest in the label. [4] Many of the older artists on the label were dropped by Warner Bros. Records. Reprise president Mo Ostin was retained as the head of the label and he went on to play a very significant role in the history of the Warner group of labels over the next four decades. Warner-Reprise executives began targeting younger acts, beginning by securing the American distribution rights to the Pye Records recordings by the Kinks in 1964. Reprise would soon add teen-oriented pop acts like Dino, Desi & Billy to the roster. As well, Frank's own daughter Nancy Sinatra (who had started recording for the label in 1961) would be retained by Ostin, becoming a major pop star starting in late 1965. The label moved almost exclusively to rock-oriented music in the late 1960s, although Frank Sinatra would continue to record for the label until the 1980s.

Warner Bros. Records American record label

Warner Bros. Records Inc. is an American record label owned by Warner Music Group and headquartered in Burbank, California. It was founded in 1958 as the recorded music division of the American film studio Warner Bros., and was one of a group of labels owned and operated by larger parent corporations for much of its existence. The sequence of companies that controlled Warner Bros. and its allied labels evolved through a convoluted series of corporate mergers and acquisitions from the early 1960s to the early 2000s. Over this period, Warner Bros. Records grew from a struggling minor player in the music industry to one of the top record labels in the world.

Mo Ostin is an American record executive who has worked for several companies, including Verve, Reprise Records, Warner Bros. Records, and DreamWorks. He was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2003 by Paul Simon, Neil Young, and Lorne Michaels. He is known among his colleagues as the most artist-friendly executive in the music business.

Pye Records was a British record label. Its best known artists were Lonnie Donegan (1956–69), Petula Clark (1957–71), The Searchers (1963–67), The Kinks (1964–71), Sandie Shaw (1964–71), Status Quo (1968–71) and Brotherhood of Man (1975–79). The label changed its name to PRT Records in 1980, before being briefly reactivated as Pye Records in 2006.

Through direct signings or distribution deals, by the 1970s the Reprise roster grew to include Lee Hazlewood, Jill Jackson, Jimi Hendrix, the early Joni Mitchell recordings, Neil Young, the Electric Prunes, Donna Loren, Arlo Guthrie, Norman Greenbaum, Tom Lehrer, Tiny Tim, Ry Cooder, Captain Beefheart, Family, the early 1970s recordings by Frank Zappa and the Mothers, Gram Parsons, Emmylou Harris, Nico's Desertshore , the Fugs, Jethro Tull, Pentangle, T. Rex, the Meters, John Cale, Gordon Lightfoot, Michael Franks, Richard Pryor, Al Jarreau, Fleetwood Mac, Fanny, and the Beach Boys.

Lee Hazlewood American singer, songwriter, record producer

Barton Lee Hazlewood was an American country and pop singer, songwriter, and record producer, most widely known for his work with guitarist Duane Eddy during the late 1950s and singer Nancy Sinatra in the 1960s.

Paul & Paula were an American pop singing duo, best known for their 1963 million selling No. 1 hit record, "Hey Paula".

Joni Mitchell Canadian musician

Roberta Joan "Joni" Mitchell, CC is a Canadian singer-songwriter. Drawing from folk, pop, rock, and jazz, Mitchell's songs often reflect social and environmental ideals as well as her feelings about romance, confusion, disillusionment, and joy. She has received many accolades, including nine Grammy Awards. Rolling Stone called her "one of the greatest songwriters ever", and AllMusic has stated, "When the dust settles, Joni Mitchell may stand as the most important and influential female recording artist of the late 20th century".

Dormancy

Red label, used by Reprise throughout the late 1970s. (Label to Neil Young's Decade.) Reprise Label Red Young.JPG
Red label, used by Reprise throughout the late 1970s. (Label to Neil Young's Decade .)

In 1976, the Reprise label was deactivated by Warner Bros. and all of its roster (except Frank Sinatra and Neil Young) was moved to the main Warner Bros. label. [4] An unconfirmed explanation for this move is that Sinatra wanted to be the only artist on Reprise, and Young is said to have been the only Reprise act who refused to agree to a change in labels.[ citation needed ] Although older catalog albums continued to be manufactured with the Reprise logo, and albums by the Beach Boys on Brother Records were issued in the Reprise catalog numbering sequence, aside from Sinatra and Young (and the Sylvia Syms album Syms by Sinatra, which Sinatra conducted and co-produced) there were no new releases on Reprise for years.

Revival and Reprise today (1985-present)

In late 1985, some copies of the Dream Academy's hit single Life in a Northern Town were pressed on the Warner Bros. label bearing the Reprise logo. [5] 1986 saw releases bearing Reprise labels from the Dream Academy as well as Dwight Yoakam. [6] In the summer of 1987, Warner Bros. Records chairman Mo Ostin and label president Lenny Waronker officially announced the reactivation of Reprise, including its own separate promotions department, and former Warner Bros. Vice President of Promotion Rich Fitzgerald was appointed as label Vice-President. [7] In the time since, Warner Bros. has often elevated the stature of Reprise to the rank of secondary parent label, as many of its subsidiary labels (such as Straight and Kinetic) have had their records released in conjunction with Reprise.

As of 2017, it is home to such artists as Enya, Michael Bublé, Eric Clapton, Green Day, Stevie Nicks, Neil Young, Deftones, Josh Groban, Disturbed, Idina Menzel, Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers, Gerard Way and Never Shout Never.

It was formerly home to the Jimi Hendrix and the Barenaked Ladies' catalogs in the U.S.. When the Bee Gees back catalog was remastered by Rhino Records in the 2000s, their CDs were issued under the Reprise label (they appeared on sister labels Atco and Warner Bros. in the past).

Neil Young stated in a documentary about his life that Marilyn Manson was turned down by Reprise.

In 2010, Reprise opened a country music division, operating as part of Warner Music Group Nashville, featuring Blake Shelton, the JaneDear Girls, Michelle Branch and Frankie Ballard as part of its roster. [8]

In September 2011, several layoffs took place at Reprise Records and other Warner labels. [9]

In 2017, Reprise released Enya's albums on vinyl. Some of them were pressed on this format for the very first time.

Reprise Records artists

Labels

Parent organizations

See also

Related Research Articles

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Howie Klein is an American writer, concert promoter, disc jockey, music producer, record label founder, record label executive, progressive political activist, and adjunct professor of music. He is perhaps best known for his role as President of Reprise Records from 1989 to 2001. He appears occasionally as himself in music-related film documentaries and has received accolades for his stance against censorship and for his advocacy of free speech protection.

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Soundtrack Recordings from the Film Jimi Hendrix is the soundtrack to the 1973 documentary film, Jimi Hendrix. The double album was released by Reprise Records in July 1973. It contains the full-length live performances from the film and some clips from interviews. The album peaked at number 89 on the Billboard album chart, which generated concern at Reprise Records that repackaging old material would no longer satisfy the fans of Jimi Hendrix. The album has not been released on compact disc.

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References

  1. Edwards, David. "Reprise Records Story" . Retrieved May 21, 2013.
  2. Reprise Records story.
  3. John Ward (December 11, 1990). "The Chairman of the Board hits another quarter century". The Tech .
  4. 1 2 3 Giles, Jeff. "To Play and Play Again: How Frank Sinatra's Thirst for Creative Freedom Led to Some of Classic Rock's Greatest Records". ultimateclassicrock.com. Diffuser Network. Retrieved 2016-08-02.
  5. "The Dream Academy - Life In A Northern Town".
  6. "Reprise Label Discography - USA - Page 27 - 45cat".
  7. "Reprise Recs". Archived from the original on July 15, 2011.
  8. "Warner Music Nashville Official Website". Warner Music Nashville Official Website. Retrieved May 8, 2016.
  9. "Updated: Layoffs At Warner Bros./Reprise".